1990 raw Fang Zhuan (square brick) from the Menghai region
Featuring : A nice new teapot!
This is the first big chunk of aged pu I have yet owned - I think I'm allowed to say 1990 is aged without being shouted down too much.
This is what Stéphane has to say about it:
"1990 raw Fang Zhuan (square brick) from the Menghai region (not the factory). This brick contains leaves of all grades. It reminded me very much the smell of tree leaves in the fall, when they are still moist and dry on the ground in misty, foggy woods. It has some fresh taste as well and a strong qi. The mix of grades creates a tea that feels very broad and difficult to grasp. That's why I say there is fog in the forest."
I have had maybe ten sessions with this tea since I acquired it and took the pic you see above. I'm still not exactly sure what it's all about which corresponds nicely with Stéphane and his talk of fog in the forest.
It is an enjoyable and warming tea, that much I am sure of.
The 17 odd years of storage have imparted a shu like quality to the brew. It reminds me of the best bits of good quality compost, in a good way, which again may not be too far from the forest floor that Stéphane recalls. . There is almost nothing in the way of bitterness or astringency detectable. I do not have a great deal of experience with pu-erh but I would hazard a guess that this was not stored in the Sahara.
Considering this fang zhuan was bought for less than some 2007 beengs are selling for I am very happy with my purchase and it is infinity more drinkable than any sheng I have from the past few years, especially in these winter months. I suspect this is not a masterclass in 1990's sheng but it certainly is a tea glad I'm bought, I say bought as opposed to invested. Since I own very little pu-erh more than a few years old it also increases my pu-erh street cred to have a sizable chunk of 17 yr old sheng, not bad eh.